For early learners, it is critical to encourage teachers to engage children in activities that foster curiosity and spark exploration and discovery through science. Science activities provide children with opportunities to develop and practice many different skills including organization, communication, collaboration and perseverance, as well as analytical skills such as inferring, reasoning and problem-solving. Studies have shown that students who begin to develop an interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics during the elementary years often end up in high paying STEM careers.
The practice of teaching adult learners lies in the basic fundamentals taught in early childhood education. Similar to early childhood education, Adult Education literacy programs address teaching the whole learner.
Watch segment on Dr. Colina Poullard, HCDE Director of Digital Learning for the Teaching and Learning Center (TLC), chat with Fox 26 News on tips for students learning from home.
The demand for adult education increased partly due to the economic fallout of COVID-19 which has forced the Harris County Department of Education (HCDE) Adult Education division to respond swiftly and assertively by offering remote learning to participants. Program interest has spiked approximately 100% driven by adults pursuing reskilling as a result of historical layoffs. In this changing economy adult learners are leaning toward short term non-degree programs that lead to employment. In collaboration with industry specific employers HCDE offers short- term workforce certificate programs through flexibility virtual part time or distance learning modalities. Our program has transitioned to virtual learning while maintaining student engagement and a quality educational experience.
HCDE’s Adult Education division currently offers the following programs:
• Core Construction
• Allied Health – Medical Assistant Prep, Phlebotomy, Certified Nurse Assistant
• Business Office Technology Specialist
• Customer Service/Marketing Specialist
All classes are offered virtually. Allied Health programs are virtual with a face to face lab component.
The new normal of delivering lessons via videoconferencing tools is the very definition of 21st century learning. But getting and keeping students engaged in classroom discussion…online, is another matter.
Here at HCDE’s Teaching and Learning Center, Dr. Colina Poullard supports Harris County Schools with strategies that support teachers through trainings and workshops to assist in developing engaging virtual lessons.
Read about how a debate coach with experience guiding virtual discussions explains how to get students engaged with each other and with the course content.